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Discussion Starter #1
This morning while waiting for a couple things to finish at work I've been out looking for my next organized ride and bumped across the mother of all half-century rides. I've actually known about the 3 and 6 gaps rides in the North GA mountains for a while, but I think fear of them has kept me away from looking for the details.

The 3 gap 50 is a popular motorcycle route known as 'the loop' and I've ridden it more times than I can count over the years... at speeds we won't even talk about. Between Spring and Fall each year a half dozen or so motorcyclists get the pleasure of being hauled away from that area in a life-flight helicopter. I can recall a time or two passing a bicyclists that looked like they were on the verge of a coronary on that route and thinking to myself, "what kind of nut case would want to do that?" ... and now years later I guess I know that answer to that question. A nut case like me.

I don't know if I'm up for it or not this year. It may have to be on next years list. 58 miles and 6385 feet of elevation climb. Check out the details here http://www.cyclenorthgeorgia.com I have until September 30th to make up my mind.
 

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Go ahead and "git er done" :)) think long think wrong
 

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Discussion Starter #3
This year I might make it a 1 gap ride and try climbing Wolfpen gap. It starts around mile 28 (at the dip in the chart) and goes to around mile 40. Tons of good mountain biking in that area.

 

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Discussion Starter #4 (Edited)
Interesting timing on my search for a challenging half century. Last night one of the guys in my local IMBA (International Mountain Bike Assoc) chapter says he's signed up for the Fool's Gold 50 mountain bike ride here in Dahlonega, GA (in 1828 gold was discovered in Dahlonega). This race is the final leg of the National Ultra Endurance Series (people doing that series do two loops making it a 100 miles).

Anyways, he's trying to pull together a group of local riders to share in the pain and agony. I'm just crazy enough to be tempted to try it. I can't tell you when the last time I did 50 miles on a mountain bike was, but it wasn't in this decade. And it certainly didn't include 7000+ feet of vertical climbing. This morning I read several blog posts from previous years races and several people said it was one of the hardest rides they've ever done. It will no doubt be mine too if I decide to take the challenge. 6 hours seem to be the goal for most people, I don't think anyone made it.

The race is on Sept 8th, which is when the weather here in the south starts to cool, but it would not be out of the question for it to be 95 degrees that day with 90% humidity. I have to decide soon because I'll need all 3 months to train for it. I really hate climbing....
 
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